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John's Gallery | profile | all galleries >> Ciudad Perdida, Colombia 2008 tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Ciudad Perdida, Colombia 2008

Images from Margaret's 22 km, 6 day trek (3 up, 1 there, 2 back) to the archaeological site known as the Lost City of the Tairona Indians, deep inside the rain forests of the Sierra Nevada mountains in Colombia.

Despite having lived there since the 9th century, the indigenous peoples slowly moved away from the city deeper into the mountains, abandoning their capital to avoid the Spanish conquistadores and their poor hygiene. Over the last 300 years, the 2 square km city was slowly consumed by the jungle and eventually lost. It was only rediscovered in 1972 by huaqueros (looters) searching for gold who, after 3 years of digging it up, began to argue over it. Soon enough, one of the groups informed the authorities out of spite, and so began an official archaeological investigation in 1975, putting an end to any further pilfering.

You can read an excellent, well written journal of the trek at this 'Lost City Trek' blog entry.

Gathering and waiting for transportation
Gathering and waiting for transportation
Chiva jeep
Chiva jeep
Carolina and Steve
Carolina and Steve
lieutenant
lieutenant
CP011.jpg
CP011.jpg
the chiva driver
the chiva driver
Bougainvillea in the tiny village at the beginning of the hike
Bougainvillea in the tiny village at the beginning of the hike
Starting the hike
Starting the hike
Cattle drive
Cattle drive
CP023.jpg
CP023.jpg
Our guide Omar and his leaf-tattooed belly
Our guide Omar and his leaf-tattooed belly
CP027.jpg
CP027.jpg
Omar goofing with some stall owners
Omar goofing with some stall owners
First break
First break
David
David
CP033.jpg
CP033.jpg
CP036.jpg
CP036.jpg
Carolina
Carolina
Farm workers along the trail
Farm workers along the trail
Small landholdings dotted the countryside
Small landholdings dotted the countryside
trail steps
trail steps
CP046.jpg
CP046.jpg
CP050.jpg
CP050.jpg
Omar in an eroded part of the trail
Omar in an eroded part of the trail
CP052.jpg
CP052.jpg
CP053.jpg
CP053.jpg
river crossing at the first camp
river crossing at the first camp
closely hung hammacks
closely hung hammacks
Omar cooking supper
Omar cooking supper
CP062.jpg
CP062.jpg
Steve and Carolina
Steve and Carolina
CP067.jpg
CP067.jpg
Mules on the trail
Mules on the trail
Mule making its way home
Mule making its way home
Crossing the river
Crossing the river
CP075.jpg
CP075.jpg
 Coke lab guy
Coke lab guy
Coke lab guy talking to Roman
Coke lab guy talking to Roman
Child walking the trail to school
Child walking the trail to school
toilet, shower and flushing water
toilet, shower and flushing water
beautiful mule driver
beautiful mule driver
CP081.jpg
CP081.jpg
Soldier on the trail
Soldier on the trail
More soldiers
More soldiers
Just how much can you pack on a mule?
Just how much can you pack on a mule?
More,
More,
more,
more,
and then some!
and then some!
Slash and burn erosion
Slash and burn erosion
meeting of two cultures
meeting of two cultures
fruit snack on a banana leaf
fruit snack on a banana leaf
yet another river crossing
yet another river crossing
thatched hut
thatched hut
village
village
walking through their village
walking through their village
CP099.jpg
CP099.jpg
CP100.jpg
CP100.jpg
CP101.jpg
CP101.jpg
CP102.jpg
CP102.jpg
Omar, Hila, Roman and Brendan
Omar, Hila, Roman and Brendan
David and Carolina
David and Carolina
Margaret
Margaret
Young family - she asked for one of my bandanas
Young family - she asked for one of my bandanas
CP109.jpg
CP109.jpg
primary growth jungle
primary growth jungle
mushrooms abound
mushrooms abound
CP115.jpg
CP115.jpg
CP116.jpg
CP116.jpg
camp
camp
banana stalk
banana stalk
two camp visitors
two camp visitors
kitchen set-up
kitchen set-up
Indigenous Family
Indigenous Family
CP124.jpg
CP124.jpg
Woman basket weaver holds Roman's unfinished basket
Woman basket weaver holds Roman's unfinished basket
CP126.jpg
CP126.jpg
empanada breakfast
empanada breakfast
tuna filling for empanadas
tuna filling for empanadas
twisting the twine to make bolsas
twisting the twine to make bolsas
our bag weaver, demonstrating her technique for twisting twine
our bag weaver, demonstrating her technique for twisting twine
I traded my mosquito head net for some pictures. She promptly turned the netting into a bag.
I traded my mosquito head net for some pictures. She promptly turned the netting into a bag.
homemade backpack
homemade backpack
CP139.jpg
CP139.jpg
Steve climbing a fence
Steve climbing a fence
Trail wandering through a banana orchard
Trail wandering through a banana orchard
CP144.jpg
CP144.jpg
trail
trail
trail
trail
CP148.jpg
CP148.jpg
David
David
Brendan
Brendan
Hila
Hila
Steve
Steve
Omar
Omar
Roman
Roman
Carolina
Carolina
that damned dog
that damned dog
river crossing
river crossing
another river crossing
another river crossing
waterfalls everywhere
waterfalls everywhere
river spider
river spider
We have arrived!
We have arrived!
1900 steps up to the Lost City
1900 steps up to the Lost City
more and more little, bitty steps
more and more little, bitty steps
CP168.jpg
CP168.jpg
CP169.jpg
CP169.jpg
Several of the 1,900 ancient steps up to the first ruins
Several of the 1,900 ancient steps up to the first ruins
ruins
ruins
ruins
ruins
ruins
ruins
manos and metates
manos and metates
ruins
ruins
the clouds roll in
the clouds roll in
ruins
ruins
ruins
ruins
ruins
ruins
ruins
ruins
making arepas
making arepas
CP195.jpg
CP195.jpg
Omar chopping firewood
Omar chopping firewood
CP198.jpg
CP198.jpg
dishwashing
dishwashing
primitive shower
primitive shower
toilet and shower set-up
toilet and shower set-up
camp at the Cuidad Perdida
camp at the Cuidad Perdida
camp
camp
kitchen sink
kitchen sink
ferns and flowers
ferns and flowers
eroded trail
eroded trail
CP213.jpg
CP213.jpg
grating cheese
grating cheese
morning hot chocolate
morning hot chocolate
breadfast arepas
breadfast arepas
Brendan and Hila
Brendan and Hila
camp at the Cuidad Perdida
camp at the Cuidad Perdida
camp
camp
CP223.jpg
CP223.jpg
beautiful stairway
beautiful stairway
pressure cooking on a wood fire!
pressure cooking on a wood fire!
CP227.jpg
CP227.jpg
Brendan, Omar, Roman and Carolina
Brendan, Omar, Roman and Carolina
thatched hut
thatched hut
CP230.jpg
CP230.jpg
Carolina
Carolina
Steve
Steve
CP233.jpg
CP233.jpg
David
David
David
David
Hila and Roman
Hila and Roman
An iconic view of the Lost City
An iconic view of the Lost City
CP238.jpg
CP238.jpg
wooden bench
wooden bench
twine bag
twine bag
wooden bench
wooden bench
metate used until a hole is formed in the rock
metate used until a hole is formed in the rock
mossy ruin
mossy ruin
ruin
ruin
ruin
ruin
jungle setting
jungle setting
ruin
ruin
ruin
ruin
ruin
ruin
Hila and Omar
Hila and Omar
Roman and David
Roman and David
Steve
Steve
 Subterranean   hide away
Subterranean hide away
pool
pool
waterfall
waterfall
Omar and a sacrificial rock
Omar and a sacrificial rock
another soldier and Hila
another soldier and Hila
ceremonial chair
ceremonial chair
waterfall
waterfall
CP270.jpg
CP270.jpg
Omar
Omar
Roman (Switzerland), Margaret (USA), Steve (USA), Carolina (Italy), Omar (Colombia [our guide]), Brendan (Canada), Hila (Israel)
Roman (Switzerland), Margaret (USA), Steve (USA), Carolina (Italy), Omar (Colombia [our guide]), Brendan (Canada), Hila (Israel)
Margaret
Margaret
Roman, Margaret, Steve, Carolina, David, Brendan, Hila
Roman, Margaret, Steve, Carolina, David, Brendan, Hila
tree-climbing chicken
tree-climbing chicken
CP278.jpg
CP278.jpg
cotton gin
cotton gin
Hila
Hila
Roman
Roman
Steve
Steve
Carolina
Carolina
Omar
Omar
David
David
Margaret
Margaret
Brendan
Brendan
soldier checking our gear
soldier checking our gear
Yikes! the legs.
Yikes! the legs.